Tuesday, Jan. 21; 7PM
Finneran Pavilion; Villanova, Pa.
TV: CBSSN – @AndrewCatalon, Steve Lappas (@stlappas) & @JonRothstein
RADIO: 93.5/107.5/1070 – @MarkMinner & Nick Gardner (@n_gardner)
TuneIn Radio App, Sirius 211, XM 202, SiriusXM Internet 965
The Bulldogs look to break a two-game losing streak when they travel to Pennsylvania for a Top 15 match-up with Villanova.
THE SERIES: Villanova Leads, 11-3
Streak: Villanova, W4
In Philadelphia: Villanova Leads, 5-1
First Meeting: Villanova, 62-54; 11/30/96 (Puerto Rico Shootout)
Last Meeting: Villanova, 75-54; 3/2/19 (Philadelphia)
• Butler has out-rebounded 15 of its 18 opponents this season after out-rebounding only 10 of 33 in 2018-19.
• Butler’s nine NET Quad 1 and Quad 2 victories are tied for second nationally (Kansas has 10).
• Butler had not allowed an opponent 70 points in its first 16 games of the season before surrendering 78 and 79 points, respectively, in its last two games.
• The Bulldogs are fifth in the nation, allowing only 57.1 points per game.
• Jordan Tucker recorded his first career double-double (14 points and 10 rebounds) in Wednesday’s game with Seton Hall. He has scored in double figures in three straight games, the second such streak of his Butler career.
• Butler leads the BIG EAST in rebounding margin in all games (+6.6) and in conference games (+11.7).
• Kamar Baldwin is averaging 18.2 points per game in BIG EAST play, which is fourth in the conference.
• Tucker (54.2 percent) is second in the BIG EAST in three-point percentage during conference play.
• Baldwin has moved into ninth on Butler’s career scoring list with 1,725 points.
• Baldwin’s next assist will be his 316th, tying him for tenth on Butler’s career list; Aaron Thompson is currently eighth on that list.
• Butler’s field goal percentage defense (.377; 15th) and three-point percentage defense (.279; 12th) are both among the national leaders.
• Twelve of Butler’s 18 opponents this season have not scored 60 points.
• After committing only 10.4 turnovers per game in non-conference contests, Butler is averaging 15.2 turnovers per BIG EAST game. The Bulldogs are still 40th nationally at 11.7 turnovers per game.
• Since the BIG EAST reconfigured in 2013, the Bulldogs are the only current BIG EAST school with a victory over Villanova at the Finneran Pavilion on campus.
• Sean McDermott is averaging 7.4 rebounds per game in BIG EAST play, sixth in the conference.
ON THE BOARDS: What was one of Butler’s most glaring weaknesses a season ago has become a strength in 2019-20. The Bulldogs have out-rebounded 15 of its 18 opponents this season after out-rebounding only 10 of 33 in 2018-19. Butler has taken that up a level in BIG EAST play, out-rebounding opponents by an average margin of +11.5. Butler held a 46-24 rebounding advantage at St. John’s in the BIG EAST opener on New Year’s Eve, its largest margin since 63-28 vs. The Citadel Nov. 14, 2015. The Bulldogs also out-rebounded Providence, 44-26, in the Jan. 10 win in Rhode Island.
UNCHARACTERISTIC PERFORMANCES: The Bulldogs’ trademark defense has not been as stout over the past two games — coinciding with two of Butler’s three losses so far this season. Seton Hall (78-70 winners on Wednesday) and DePaul (which took a 79-66 result in Chicago Saturday) combined to shoot 57 free throws over those two games (making 46 for 81-percent shooting). Due to foul trouble, Aaron Thompson was limited to three second-half minutes against Seton Hall before fouling out with 6:28 to play in a one-point game. Bryce Nze was limited to a season-low 13 minutes before fouling out at DePaul.
ON THE DEFENSIVE:
• Only six Butler opponents have scored 60 or more points; Butler has also limited four opponents to 50 or fewer points.
• Only six of Butler’s opponents have registered more assists than turnovers.
• Only three of Butler’s opponents have shot better than 44 percent from the field (Missouri, Stanford, DePaul); 12 have been held to less than 40 percent shooting.
• Butler has limited 12 of its opponents to less than 30-percent shooting from three-point range this season.
ONE YEAR AGO: Villanova won both match-ups with Butler last season. Aaron Thompson led the Bulldogs with 15 points (6-of-9 shooting) and four assists in the Wildcats’ 80-72 win at Hinkle Jan. 22, 2019. Villanova won at the Wells Fargo Center, 75-54, March 2, 2019.